from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun An act or procedure intended to achieve an end by deceptive or fraudulent means. synonym: wile.
  • noun A mischievous action; a prank.
  • noun A stupid, disgraceful, or childish act.
  • noun A peculiar trait or characteristic; a mannerism.
  • noun A peculiar event with unexpected, often deceptive results.
  • noun A deceptive or illusive appearance; an illusion.
  • noun A special skill; a knack.
  • noun A convention or specialized skill peculiar to a particular field of activity.
  • noun A feat of magic or legerdemain.
  • noun A difficult, dexterous, or clever act designed to amuse.
  • noun All the cards played in a single round, one from each player.
  • noun One such round.
  • noun A period or turn of duty, as at the helm of a ship.
  • noun Slang A prison term.
  • noun An act of prostitution.
  • noun A prostitute's customer.
  • noun A session carried out by a prostitute with a client.
  • noun Slang A robbery or theft.
  • transitive & intransitive verb To cheat or deceive or to practice trickery or deception.
  • adjective Of, relating to, or involving tricks.
  • adjective Capable of performing tricks.
  • adjective Designed or made for doing a trick or tricks.
  • adjective Weak, defective, or liable to fail.
  • idiom (do/turn) To bring about the desired result.
  • idiom (how's tricks) Used to make a friendly inquiry about a person or that person's affairs.
  • idiom (not miss a trick) To be extremely alert.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun An obsolete form of trig.
  • To deceive by trickery; cozen; cheat.
  • To bring, render, or induce by trickery; beguile; inveigle; cajole.
  • To use trickery, deception, or imposture.
  • To juggle; play.
  • To toy; handle idly.
  • To dress; trim; deck; prank; specifically, to arrange, dress, or decorate, especially in a fanciful way, as the person or the hair: often followed by out or up.
  • In heraldry: To draw, as a bearing or a collection of bearings, or a whole escutcheon or achievement of arms.
  • Especially, to draw in black and white only, without color, or to sketch slightly, whether a bearing or a whole achievement.
  • noun A crafty or fraudulent device; a deceitful expedient; an artifice; a stratagem.
  • noun A feat or an exhibition of skill or dexterity, as in juggling or sleight of hand.
  • noun A roguish or mischievous performance; a prank; a practical joke; a hoax.
  • noun A foolish, vicious, or disgraceful act: with disparaging or contemptuous force.
  • noun A peculiar art; skill; adroitness; knack.
  • noun A peculiar trait, manner, habit, or practice; a characteristic; a peculiarity; a mannerism.
  • noun A trace; a suggestion; a reminder.


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English trik, from Old North French trique, from trikier, to deceive, probably from Vulgar Latin *triccāre, from Latin trīcārī, to play tricks, from trīcae, tricks.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Either from Old Northern French trique (related to Old French trichier; French: tricher), from Middle High German trechen ("to launch a shot at, play a trick on"); Or from Dutch trek ("a pull, draw, trick"), from trekken ("to draw"), from Middle Dutch trekken, trēken ("to pull, place, put, move"), from Old Dutch *trekkan, *trekan (“to move, drag”), from Proto-Germanic *trakjanan, *trikanan (“to drag, scrape, pull”), from Proto-Indo-European *dreg- (“to drag, scrape”). Cognate with Low German trekken, Middle High German trecken, trechen, Danish trække, and Old Frisian trekka. Compare track, treachery, trig, and trigger.



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